McIlroy downbeat amid Oakmont woes


A frustrated Rory McIlroy acknowledged he was finding it tough to stay positive after completing an opening-round 77 in the U.S. Open.

McIlroy was four over through 13 holes on a stormy first day of action at Oakmont and slipped further down the leaderboard when play resumed on Friday, three closing bogeys leaving the four-time major champion 11 shots adrift of surprise leader Andrew Landry.

A number of other players were able to take advantage of a rain-softened course and get into red figures at a challenging venue, but McIlroy could not follow suit as his challenge faded.

"Right now I just need to focus on trying to hit fairways and hit greens," said the Northern Irishman. "I think I hit five fairways and eight greens out there, which obviously isn't going to do anything.

"I think for me the toughest thing is just trying to stay positive and not get too down on myself and try to go out there, whether it be tonight for a couple of shots or get out there tomorrow morning and try to play well and make it into the weekend.  

"Right now I'm just trying to stay as positive as I can."

The four-time major winner conceded to having trouble with the mechanics of his game and had not yet found a way to negate the issue.

"Honestly, I've been struggling with my swing, even the practice rounds a little bit. I know what I'm doing, but it's hard to change it out there," he added.

"It's been hard to give it any sort of time this week to work on it.

"I don't need to swing perfect, but I just need to be able to play one shot and know that I know where it's going to start and I know where it's going to finish and just try to go from there."

In all four of his major triumphs, McIlroy has led or been no worse than one shot adrift of the leader at the end of his first round.